Health Progress, Keto Basics, Keto Beginner, Open Blog, Uncategorized

Back 2 Basics: Update Blog

Update: 9/8/18

I have been tracking for 2 1/2 days now and I’ve already lost 1.2 pounds (as of this morning).  I’m feeling great and doing well.  I did pay for the Premium version of the Carb Manager so I could add every single thing I consumed…it’s a lot of individual ingredients when I cook at home.

Also, as you read through, you may be interested in viewing my recent, Back to Basics, blog to help get a good grasp on some keto basics.  If you’re totally new to keto, you may want to check out Keto Basics and Getting Started.

Remember, you can always reach out to me.  I’d love to help!  I am not a medical professional, but I have experience, research, resources, recipes and common sense…all of which may assist you in meeting your health goals.

-Rebecca

_______________________________________________________________

It’s so easy to get comfortable.  It wasn’t very long into my time doing keto that I stopped tracking my consumption.  I has a pretty good handle on my macros, carbs and overall consumption.  Uh…I was wrong.  Yep, you read that correctly.  I was wrong.

It gets a bit tedious to track every single item you eat every day of your life, at least for me.  I was doing a great job of tracking for the first 3-4 months, then I stopped and just eyeballed thinking I would be fine.  I didn’t gain weight, but I didn’t lose.  My health continued to improve and I did continue to shrink a little.

Mostly I am glad I didn’t go backwards, but that simply isn’t good enough as I have quite a ways to go.  I started thinking about getting back to the basics and the one thing I was putting off the most was tracking in my app (BTW, I use the Carb Manager app, but there are so many great ones that will do the trick), mostly because it takes time and is kind of annoying.  Feeling convicted and knowing that I’ve been fairly status quo for the last several months made me bite the bullet and start tracking again.  I also started fasting more regularly and not eating when I wasn’t hungry (I’ll admit that sometimes I would go out to breakfast with my husband just because I wanted to spend more time with him).

Yesterday I began my new, strict regime of fasting in the morning and tracking everything I consumed, except water and my electrolyte drink.  The one big thing I noticed was that I was over consuming carbs, didn’t have quite enough protein and went slightly over on my fat.  It’s really no wonder why I haven’t lost.  I mean, I fasted, was more careful and I still ate 31g net carbs!!  I cannot even guess how far I was off these past months.

Going to bed with this all in mind confirmed that I need to be more careful and mindful of what I’m doing and how well I’m taking care of myself.  Realistically, I don’t see myself tracking every single thing the rest of my life.  But I can make a reasonable compromise that will still help keep me in check.  I’ll tell you what I decided below.

This morning I already saw a difference!  I lost 0.8lbs.  Crap, this means I was way off when I was eyeballing!!  I lost nearly an entire pound in one day.  Dang it.  That means I was stalling because of my diet and maybe not as much because of stress as I thought.

Taking all of this in has changed my perspective.  I need to pay more attention and focus on what’s important.  I need to check myself more often than I have been.  I still have a lot of weight left to lose, at least 65 but more than 100 if you ask the doctor.  I want to be healthy for myself, my husband and I want to have children so badly…and I want to be healthy enough to get pregnant and help them to grow to be healthy babies.

My solution is simple.  I will track myself until I cannot stand it anymore and need a break.  But, instead of waiting until my annual Keto-versary to assess, I think I need to make reassessment and tracking something I strictly follow at least every season (3 months).  I’m thinking it could look something like this:

  • September track consumption in app
  • Maybe in late October or early November I stop tracking and try to eyeball
  • December reassess and track again
  • repeat for March and June

I should be tracking all of the time, but it’s just not who I am.  So I will take the time to focus on myself and reassess, then strictly track for as long as I can and tallow myself a break for the rest of that season.  Does it have to be seasonal?  No.  But I thought it would be easier for me to remember.

Here are some questions to ask yourself (and feel free to share your answers in the Comments section):

  • How are you doing right now?
  • How have you been feeling mentally and physically?
  • How do you track your consumption?
    • What tools or apps do you use?
    • Are they effective and user-friendly?
    • Do you need a different solution?
  • What are your goals?  Do they need to be updated or modified?
  • What changes do you feel that you need to make to achieve your goal(s)?

If you’re enjoying this blog, please share with others and click the Follow button so you get notifications when I post anything new. 

If you have any suggestions, questions or comments, please add them to the comments section below or email me directly at beckdoes20@gmail.com.

I’m not a health professional, just a regular person who may have some experience and resources that can help.

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Keto Basics, Keto Beginner, Open Blog, Recipes, Uncategorized

Back to Basics 2018

New to Keto?  You’ve come to the right post.
An old Keto pro?  You’ve also come to the right place.

Sometimes we find ourselves getting comfortable and lax with our health.  I know what Keto is and how to follow it.  But that doesn’t mean that after a year I’m still as strict as I used to be.  This blog is dedicated to the basics of Keto success, which you are either learning now or refreshing and reminding yourself of now.

What is Keto?

Your body needs fuel.  It can use either carbohydrates (carbs) or fat for what it needs.  Carbs and excess protein turn into glucose, which is what your body uses as fuel very easily (in most cases).  When your body has glucose to use it stores the fat for later.  When glucose is used up or is unavailable, your body switches to fat for the energy it needs.  The fat is turned into ketones naturally and is then used by your body.  When your body burns ketones for energy, you are now in a state of Ketosis, or Keto for short.  The fat can come from what you consume or what your body has stored, but it will take from the stored fat last, so that is important to keep in mind.

The Keto lifestyle is basically consuming a very small amount of carbs (20 grams or less daily) so that your body is forced to be in ketosis.  In the beginning you have to train your body to make this change and you will see and feel many changes, including rapid weight loss, which is mostly water weight in the beginning.  Keto’ers, or those in ketosis, do not retain water like they did before.  After the initial weight loss and you’re keto-adapted (used to fat for fuel), you will see real changes in fat loss and improved health.

That was a really long way of saying that your body is a machine that runs off of fat…either the fat you feed it or the fat it has stored around your body.  To do this, you should eat 20 grams or less of carbs daily.

There are a few more tidbits, such as foods to avoid and whatnot, like grains and sugar.  But you can learn about that another day.

black and grey casio scientific calculator showing formula
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Macros…What Are They & How Do I Figure Out Mine?

Every body is different.  What my body needs is much different than what your body needs.  A simple calculation of where the calories are coming from is a ratio of 60-75% fat, 15-30% protein and 5% carbs.  I did say simple though, right?  Using apps and macro calculators help a great deal in identifying your specific keto macros.  I particularly like the Keto Calculator on Ruled.me.  It’s easy to use and understand.

Example:

I’m a 38 year old woman who is 5’7″ weighing 266 pounds.  When I calculate using the Keto Calculator on Rules.me to reach my goals, my macros look like this: 1799 calories, 126g fat, 146g protein, and 20g net carbs.

(Carbs are total.  Net carbs are carbs minus fiber.  Some Keto’ers use carbs and some use net carbs.  I use net carbs and am happy.)

Try a macros calculator and see what you come up with for yourself.  This is super important information, so be sure to write it down or add it to your app.

Modifications:

You may find that the ratio is not good for you.  For instance, some body types are better with more protein, while others seem to do well with way more than 75% fat and zero carbs.  You will want to make adjustments based on your own body and how you feel.

You will want to keep carbs low.  Most people do well on 20g carbs daily, but if you’re pregnant or have other needs, perhaps aiming for 50g is better until you are well enough to drop down to 20g.

Intermittent Fasting:

There are a lot of great resources and medical professionals who support Keto as a healthy lifestyle.  One of which is Dr. Eric Berg.  While many of us believe intermittent fasting (IF) are helpful, Dr. Berg is a true believer who strongly believe Keto and IF got together to improve and maximize your health.

Fasting is when you go without eating for a long time and is usually seen as suffering.  IF is a small fast that can be done multiple times during the week and isn’t generally very much of a struggle at all.

When you eat anything your body has an insulin spike (just smaller when on keto) and stops or slows ketosis.  But when you’re IF and in ketosis your body has time to rest and heal…and the more time you have between meals, the longer your body has to heal itself.  The reason its easy with keto is because you don’t get very hungry when you eat a lot of fat…you feel full and satisfied.

I wouldn’t recommend this to anyone until after they are fully keto-adapted.  And you should start off slowly, gradually increasing the length of each fast.  It doesn’t work well for everyone, but most people do quite well.  And remember, you aren’t starving because your body will consume the stored fat if it needs more.

Usually you will skip breakfast and have coffee, pushing your first meal of the day back a bit.  Then you will eat your second meal and that’s it for the day.  Go to sleep and wake up to do it again.  The most common fast is 18:6 IF, which means you fast for 18 hours and eat during a 6 hour window (1 or 2 meals).  Most of the time during a fast you’ll be sleeping anyway, so you will hardly notice you aren’t eating.

A typical day of IF:

  • 6 A.M. wake up and have a cup of coffee (some say butter is okay, some say it isn’t…I do butter and am very happy)
  • 1 P.M. eat a good lunch
  • 6 P.M. eat a good dinner
  • 9 P.M. go to bed
steak food
Photo by Malidate Van on Pexels.com

Great Keto Meals/Snacks: (I’ll work on updating all of these recipes so you can click on the links to find more information.)

  • Magic coffee
  • Taco salad with nuts and seeds for crunch, your favorite taco meat, shredded cheese
  • Bacon, cheesy scrambled eggs, zucchini and squash, and a side of avocado
  • Crack chicken over steamed broccoli
  • Porterhouse steak, creamed spinach and mashed cauliflower
  • Chicken wings and bacon with ranch
  • Kalua Pig (pulled pork) salad with ACV dressing, nuts, seeds, hemp hearts, cucumbers and fresh bacon crumbles
  • Bacon wrapped pork chops with roasted cauliflower and guacamole
  • Baked salmon with pesto butter over a pile of parmesan and herb cauliflower rice
  • Fathead pizza or cheesy bread
  • Chocolate peanut butter cups (fat bomb)
  • Blueberry cheesecake fat bombs
  • Chocolate chip protein cookies
  • Keto chocolate frosty
  • Blackberries and whipped cream

 

Best Advice:

  • Be kind & forgiving to yourself!
  • Get a Keto-Buddy!  You don’t want to go through this alone.  Having the support of family, friends or even a new Keto Facebook Friend will make all the difference in the world.
  • Salt everything!  You need to keep up your electrolytes and since you’re not retaining water, you lose electrolytes way faster than before.
  • Check labels, ingredients lists and nutritional information on all packages.
  • Stop and figure out why you’re hungry.  Are you upset or bored?  Or are you really hungry?  If you’re hungry too soon…did you eat enough fat?
  • Figure out your macros and keep track of what you’re eating and drinking.
  • Pay attention to how you feel!  There is a reason you feel a certain way.  Are you missing something nutritionally?  Maybe you need to change your diet a little or add a supplement.
  • Track your progress and successes in many ways, not just by the number on the scale.  I wish I took real before photos so I could see the difference (I just thought this would be like everything else I tried and failed.)…and I wish I took measurements too!  It’s also important to do your blood work before starting, so you can see how that improves as well.

Please comment below any questions or suggestions you may have.
Also, be sure to follow my blog to get notified as soon as I post a new recipe, update, or encouragement by clicking on the Follow button.

Health Progress, Open Blog

9/4/18 Blog Update

General Chatty Intro:

Good morning!  I know it’s been a while since I’ve been in my routine and paying enough attention to BeckDoes.  Not to worry, I was still following the Keto lifestyle and I’m still feeling decent =)  It’s been the year of change so far and I am ready to re-settle.

In the last 5 months we decided to sell our home, which meant I had to pack and store a majority of our belongings, clean and repair things, hire painters to make it look better, etc.  The sale went through after a buyer quit at the last minute in the most dramatic of fashions.  Fortunately, the home sold and we were able to move forward after being stuck in this limbo state for just about 3 months.  3 months with the bare essentials kind of gives a new perspective…and I kind of liked it after getting used to it.

Anyway, we were choosing to rent for a while, so I had to do a lot of research and hunting to find the perfect rental to meet the needs of my family.  We decided on a 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom apartment near my husband’s new job…did I mention the attention it takes to help your husband prepare for a new job?  At least I was able to resign from my teaching job and have more time to focus on family after summer school ended.  My family consists of my husband and I, our 2 small doggies and my father (who doesn’t do Keto and really needs to).  We have so many needs between all of us I really didn’t think I’d find a home that would meet it all within our budget.  PTL we did.

The long and short of it is that I’ll be able to focus more on Keto, Beck Does and helping others, which is really what I love to do the most.  I think that’s why I enjoyed teaching for 20 years.  I get to volunteer again for an after-school Bible study co-teaching position at a local Elementary school with a good friend, have a more routine schedule for cooking, cleaning, planning, resting, other housewife type duties (making appointments, managing the budget and paying bills, etc.) and helping family as needed.

In addition to the above, I’m now more available to anyone who needs help with Keto.  This is particularly exciting to me because Keto has changed my life in such a dramatic fashion in the past year that my husband and I have serious hope of getting pregnant, are no longer pre-diabetic, have more energy and mental clarity, look and feel better, etc.  I could go on.  I also really have fun with Keto.  I get to be creative, which in addition to helping others, I really like trying new recipes and trying to be creative.

Blog Plan:  BeckDoes Keto…And, So Can You!

I have scheduled on my calendar that I will be posting 2-3 blogs per week, which include recipes, encouragements, important information about Keto and health, and sharing of my story/thoughts.  Just so you know, I don’t really think I’m that special.  I’m a normal person, with normal problems just like everyone else.  But what I think it different is that I’m willing to share what’s been going on in hopes that others can identify and perhaps benefit from my experiences.

The blogs can be found at http://www.beckdoes.com (which you probably already know, since you’re there reading this blog).  If you want to get updates when these blogs are posted, be sure to subscribe or “follow” and you’ll get the notification.  You can always change your mind later, if they become uninteresting or unhelpful.

Video Plan: Beck Does

In addition to the blogs, I’m about to set up the camera equipment and begin filming again.  Most of the videos will be recipes, but I will occasionally do a vlog (similar to a blog but in video format).  I also really want to go to the store and bring you along with me, similar to what Matt & Magha do.  I’ve found that friends and family really benefit from me going to the grocery store with them and really point out what is okay, not okay and why.  It’s like hands-on training.  Besides, I need to go to the store anyway because we eat food and that’s where they sell it!

I would imagine it might be up to a week before I begin posting regular videos on YouTube.  It takes a fair amount of work to create, edit and post a video…which should get easier as I practice, but you never know.

Another type of video I like the idea of doing is interviews.  It’s not good to only hear information from me when there are a large amount of other resources and experiences out there for you to benefit from.  If you’d like to be interviewed or want me to interview a particular person, make a certain recipe, or talk about certain topics related to Keto and/or health, please let me know because I’m trying to help 😉

The videos are posted on YouTube at BeckDoes at this ugly URL – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQUejExqyrU0qSU6YoupWfQ.  You can view the videos, share them, add comments, questions and suggestions, etc.  You can also share them with people you think may enjoy or need the information.  And, if you want to make sure you know about new videos as they’re posted, be sure to click on the Subscribe button so you don’t miss out on any new content.

Social Media: BeckDoes Keto on Facebook

There is also a Facebook group that I created called BeckDoes Keto.  This group was created to provide and share Keto information, encouragement, support and help answer questions as a community.  In addition, we share updates of our successes, recipes, valuable resources and the occasional Keto joke or pun.  I love a good joke and a great pun, so it just wouldn’t be right not to include them when I find them!

If you’d like to check out the group, you’ll have to request to join.  Once approved you can view everything posted, ask questions ad even participate in get togethers.  Many in the group live in the Southern California area, so the gathers are usually around here.  There is a question when you want to join, you don’t have to answer it if you do not wish to.  It’s really to confirm you’re a human…because who wants a bot in the Keto group?

To check out the BeckDoes Keto…And, So Can You Facebook group, go to www.facebook.com/groups/beckdoesketo You can participate and share, or just passively view the content…it’s up to you!  At this point, I really don’t know how to make the content shareable with the Share button, but I am working on it.

Congratulations, if you’ve made it this far.  This blog is a bit longer than I was planning.  I think the coffee is kicking in!  WAHOO

I’m going to wrap this up with a quick update and preview of what is to come:

  • This week I am focusing on Back to Basics, which is good if you’re new to Keto or if you’ve been following this for a while and maybe aren’t so strict any more
  • I’ve officially had my 1 year Keto-versary and am pleased with the progress but wish I was magically perfectly healthy already
  • Calculating Macros is super important and will be covered in the Back to Basics this week.  How do you know when you’ve had enough fat? Too much protein? Or been indulging in too many carbohydrates to be successful?

Stay Tuned for upcoming blogs, videos and Facebook posts all about
Keto: Back to Basics!

Keto Beginner, Uncategorized

Preparing for Keto

So, you’ve decided to try Keto…Excellent!

You’ve made the right decision to try Keto to improve your health, lose weight, etc…. for whatever your reasoning, congratulations on your decision.  But where to begin and how to prepare to put your decision into action?

I’m going to tell you right now that, like all big decisions and changes in life, it may not be an easy road at the beginning.  With proper preparation and support you can get through easier and more successful.  And trust me, it is worth any trouble you may go through.

I don’t mean to scare you away from Keto.  I simply mean to inform you that there will be effort required on your part, some potential for challenges and possibly some short term ill feelings.  Most will not tell you about this until you find yourself smack in the middle of feeling crummy.  This is called the Keto-Flu.  Not to worry, you can prepare for an easier transition, ease the symptoms and feel great quickly.

Preparation #1: Weaning yourself from carbs

Living in the world of processed foods, delicious treats and convenience has our bodies trained to turn carbohydrates into glucose and used for instant energy.  Any excess glucose turns into fat and is stored.  Any fat consumed and not used also is stored for later use.  Which we know well and good will never arrive.

If the goal is a maximum of 20 net carbs daily on Keto then you need to do yourself and begin weaning from your current eating habits towards this goal.  Did you know the SAD consists of 350 grams of carbohydrates a day?  Holy cow!  This includes natural and not-so-natural sugars, flours, and high carbohydrate foods such as beans and potatoes.  Yes, beans and potatoes are bad for you.  Rice is also off limits.  As is corn.

Plan to wean yourself over a period of about 2 weeks.  During this time, be forgiving when you accidentally go over your daily count or eat something you later realize is not keto.  Check the labels and ingredient lists of foods you purchase for those surprises and track your consumption in a journal or food app.

What happens when you don’t wean off the carbs and go cold turkey?  Pain and discomfort.  Your body will go through withdraw and you will feel terrible.  You can do this, many do, but I do not recommend this.

Preparation #2: Learn more about Keto, macros and restrictions

What is Keto?  Keto, short for Ketogenic Diet/Lifestyle, is a method of consumption with high fat, moderate protein and low carbohydrates, also referred to as macros.  A macro calculator can help you to set your goals and identify your macros to achieve your goals.

Most people who follow Keto mostly track their carbs and aim for no more than 20 net grams of carbs daily.  To figure out the net carbs, simply take the total carbs and subtract fiber and sugar alcohols.

For example:  1 Avocado = 322 calories, 29g fat, 17g carbs, 4g protein, 13g fiber

  • 322 calories is not so important, even though we’re used to counting calories, this is less important
  • 29 grams of fat seems high, but according to your macros you may be allowed 100+ grams of fat daily to stay within your macros, will be very filling and is a great sources of potassium
  • 4 grams of protein is fairly low and should be tracked for your daily consumption as excess will act as a carb
  • 17 grams of carbohydrates is fairly high considering 20 grams in your total for the day, but if you subtract the fiber and sugar alcohols (17-13-0=4) then it is only 4 net carbs

There are so many great, valuable resources available to you free of charge (my favorite price).  Review Preparation #3 for some helpful resources and support.

Restrictions:  There are so many foods that I thought were healthy, even though I knew my body wasn’t processing them quite right.  I thought beans, rice, corn and soy were great for me.  Well, chemicals, GMOs and the estrogen distruptors were of concern, but I thought in general they were healthy.  Turns out they are not at all healthy!  These foods were high in carbohydrates creating huge insulin responses, creating quick spikes and even quicker crashes.  It doesn’t end there.  Most fruits, all grains, honey and agave, and even potatoes are a big no-no on Keto.

Check out the Ketogenic Diet Food List: Everything you need to know by Ruled.me for some great ideas on what you can eat and a few more ideas about what to avoid.

When shopping, take your time to learn about the food you’re buying.  Check the labels for nutritional information and read the list of ingredients for hidden flours and sugars.  When in doubt, eat real meat and vegetables…a steak cooked in butter and broccoli with hollandaise drizzled over, pan roasted salmon and brussel sprouts with home made bacon bits all cooked in bacon grease, bacon wrapped pork chops with mashed cauliflower and salad, a favorite breakfast for dinner of scrambled cheesy eggs with bacon, zucchini and avocado.

There are a few places to find a macro calculator, but so far my favorite has been the Keto Calculator on Ruled.me.  It’s easy to use and seems fairly accurate to leading me to great results.  If you use Carb Manager, a phone app, you can adjust their calculator to Keto macros (5% fat, etc.) and get good information…but you have to pay monthly for the subscription.  If I had known about the Keto Calculator on Ruled.me I think I would have used MyFitnessPal or another free app as I was learning about how to eat and what my macros look like on a day-to-day.

Preparation #3: Find support and resources

Keto Recipes:

I haven’t always had the best of luck with complicated dishes or desserts.  The best meals have been simple and easy and taste like the food they are with simple elevations to enhance it’s natural taste.  I also haven’t had much luck with cookbooks or random recipes on the Internet.

I have had great success with recipes that are simple and shared by people who have already made them!  I find these in Keto recipe groups on Facebook and from friends.  I also have learned to slightly modify some regular recipes to suit my Keto needs.

Here are a few places where I have found great recipes posted on Facebook groups:

I also share recipes on this site here in the Recipes section and in the BeckDoes Keto…And, So Can You! Facebook group.  Check them out and be sure to add links to your favorite recipes in the comments to help others find good recipes.

Keto Guides:

If you’ve found a guide that would be helpful for beginners, please share in the comments.

Keto Support Groups & a Keto-Buddy:

You will need support.  I find the support and encouragement with my husband, mom, coworkers and friends.  I used to have to do diets and healthy stuff on my own and it was tremendously difficult.  One time my husband joined me for a weight loss group provided through our health care system.  It was nice that he was there but he was a real downer and I ended up getting discouraged and not wanting to go.  You need support and encouragement for those days that you just are falling off the track or need some ideas, share food and complaints with.  I mean, I even went online and asked women in a Keto for PCOS group if their breasts were tender!  I can’t ask my husband that.  My body was changing and I needed to know if I was the only one and should go to the doctor or if it was normal.  BTW, it’s totally normal for breast tenderness and PMS to occur and it does calm down a bit as your body adjusts to being healthier.

Bottom line, get yourself some support.  Get yourself a Keto-Buddy!  A lot of people are doing Keto now, so if you post a question about anyone following Keto in your neighborhood’s Facebook page I bet you’d find at least one to be Keto-buddies with.  Someone you can chat with, go on walks with, share recipes and laugh about recipe disasters with.  Yes, you’ll have recipe disasters and it’s funnier when someone can relate.

  • BeckDoes Keto…And, So Can You!
  • Keto for PCOS (I have PCOS)
  • Browse around Facebook.  You can find Keto for Woman, Vegan Keto Made Simple, Keto for Beginners, and so many more!  And if a group just isn’t for you, find another.  You can join as many groups as you’d like.  Facebook is great!

I started a local Keto group on Facebook and recently met someone looking for a Keto-Buddy.  She’s really nice and I look forward to meeting with her tomorrow after work to go for a walk.  I’m super excited!  I hope to make a difference for her, and I’m sure she’ll have some ideas and thoughts that I just haven’t considered…not to mention she will be holding me accountable to get out and move my body in the fresh air.

Keto Medical Professionals:

  • Dr. Ken Barry
  • Dr. Eric Berg
  • You can check out Keto Clinician Finder to find a medical professional near you to support your new lifestyle.  I will say though, many medical professionals are not just coming around to “allow” their patients to do Keto, but they are encouraging Keto and doing it themselves.  So before you find a new Dr, ask your current doc about Keto and see what happens.

Helpful Videos:

Preparation #4: Dealing with the Keto-flu and becoming Feto-adapted

The Keto-flu isn’t really a flu but it isn’t enjoyable.  When your body adjusts to using fat (consumed and stored) for energy instead of carbs it goes through a lot of changes.  Your body has been using the easiest source for energy most (or probably all) of your life and making the change is difficult mentally and physically. 

You can expect to have some withdraw symptoms, such as headaches, cravings and feeling bad for a few days.  To ease the symptoms remember that you’re doing this for a good reason, increase your electrolytes, get plenty of good rest and if you’re hungry eat keto-approved food.  I would eat as much as I want and not worry about tracking too much other than carbs during this time.  Drink plenty of fluid, and increase your potassium, sodium and magnesium.  You can do this by drinking pickle juice, olive juice or supplementing with vitamins or other electrolyte mixes.

You will likely notice an immediate weight loss and even excess energy during this time.  Your body doesn’t have the carbs to hold on to the water and will be flushing out of your system.  With that water goes your electrolytes, which is why it’s so important to replenish.  That weight loss can be huge.  It won’t come back unless you stop following Keto.  Your body is no longer retaining water.

Your body may take 2-3 weeks to be fully Fat-Adapted…that means your body is efficient at using fat for energy now.  It also means that if you don’t consume enough fat to keep up with the energy needs your body will use the stored fat for energy.  This will help your weight loss further and will continue until you reach your goal and you find you’re in what is commonly referred to as “Maintenance.”

If you’re close to your goal weight you will get to Maintenance much quicker than others.  While I’ve lost over 65 pounds to date, I have about 100 to go until I’m able to add more carbs (healthy carbs) and fat to create a balance of intake to meet the needs of my body on a daily basis.  I don’t worry about this now.  But I have a good friend who is in Maintenance and she’s added more fat and increased her carbs a bit…she’s even has sweet potatoes on occasion.

Anyhow, once you’re fat-adapted you will want to really pay attention to your body, add exercise and supplement, if necessary.  I have personally found exercise to be difficult for me because I’ve got an underlying Adrenal issue that I am also dealing with.  When I exercise I have plenty of energy and feel pretty darn good.  But when I’m done my adrenals act up and I have extreme inflammation, feel tired, get migraines and other “great” things.  It helps to identify which body type you are by taking the Body Type Quiz for free from Dr. Berg on his website.  The information helps you to modify the diet, exercise, address specific issues that may be hindering your success with Keto as other health issues need attention, like your thyroid or hormones.

My day to day includes moderate exercise achieved at work walking around.  I stay Keto but have modified to include less fat and more protein.  I also do my best to stay under 20g net carbs daily…unless I’m about the start my cycle and then I eat as much as I want as long as it’s Keto (including extra steaks and chocolate).  I do my best to limit my stress and I take supplements to fill in nutritional gaps, address my adrenal fatigue, allergies and PCOS.  I’m a hot mess…but I’m dealing with it and still easily seeing success.

Preparation #5: Exercise, setting goals & tracking

If you’re already exercising, you may want to take it a little easy the first few days (not stop, but maybe not run a marathon) until you’re through the keto-flu and on your way to becoming fat-adapted.  If you don’t exercise, I’d wait until you feel the energy to do so.  Trust me, you will feel it.  I don’t exercise much but I sure do see the house getting cleaner and I’m cooking a whole lot more than I used to!

Depending upon the needs of your body, you might want to ease into exercise.  As mentioned in the section prior, according to Dr. Berg’s Body Type the Adrenal Body requires a slow re-entry into exercise and it’s not the same as the other body types.  I have friends who I wish I could keep up with.  Their body types are very different from my own, not to mention I have let my damage fester for much longer, but they are running and doing all kinds of great exercises and just having a fun outdoor life.

As for setting goals, using the macros you’ve calculated and the identified body type, now you can set reasonable goals for yourself.  I like a long-term goal with some benchmarks.  For instance, my long term goal is to weight 165 lbs with my benchmarks at 250, 225 and 200.  Realistically, I can’t see myself less than 200 lbs and figured I will reassess when I get there.  Now that its been a successful 7 months, I think I could easily get there in the next year or so without too many issues.  My adrenals are improving, as is my inflammation, mental health and migraines.

Weight is NOT the only way to measure success.  In fact, tracking your weight isn’t the best way to measure success.  It’s ideal to measure yourself in various areas of your body, such as your head, neck, chest, waist, hips and thighs.  Keeping track of the inches lost around your body is a much better indicator of your success than the scale.  In addition, you can keep track of your clothing size and how loose they are becoming, as well as, how you feel, how often you need certain medications, etc.  I can’t help but to track my weight, so I do that.  But I also keep track of how I feel, the medications I’m able to remove or lower, and the clothes I’m donating to the local women’s shelter.  If you’re looking for a great Smart Scale with all the bells and whistles but not the high price tag, check out this post I wrote about the new scale we bought (it measures BMI and all sorts of things!).  Of course, don’t forget to keep track of your internals by taking blood tests from your doctor, if possible.

What to keep track of:

  • Inches
  • Clothing sizes
  • Feelings/Moods
  • Medication needs and changes
  • Blood workup: hormones, cholesterol, a1c, etc.
  • Weight

Keto journals and tracking apps:

If you have a favorite, please mention it in the comments so others can discover more options available to them on their Keto journey.

Preparation #6: Be prepared for success!

The weirdest part about Keto is that it works.  I know you’re thinking, “Duh!  That’s why you’re reading this because it’s supposed to work.”  But after many decades of failed diet and exercise attempts, I wasn’t really feeling like Keto would work.  I thought it would be like all the others…ultimate failure.  And then…it wasn’t!

It’s been over 7 months and my husband and I are still doing well, still losing weight, still feeling great, still have increased energy overall, still have better mental clarity and have hope!  I now have hope I could get healthy enough to get pregnant.  I now have hope that I won’t have to shop in the Plus size section of the department stores with limited options.  I now have hope that I can feel better and get off my medication.  I now have hope that I can return to work and succeed.  I have so much hope I cannot believe it!  I personally feel like Keto is a godsend and I’m excited to share it with anyone who is interested.

My advice: Give Keto a try.  Cut out the carbs and you won’t die.  You can still have keto-approved snacks and foods that are delicious (yes, soda and chocolate).  Get yourself plugged into a facebook group with recipes and support, even if it’s not BeckDoes.  Get yourself someone to go through this with to provide one another with ideas, support and encouragement.  Give yourself a chance to be successful and have hope again!

If there is anything you’d like to share for anyone looking to begin Keto, please add it in the comments.  We are a community of support and I love sharing our experiences, hopes, dreams, recipes, failed experiments, and successes.

Remember: Sharing is Caring!!